We finished shooting yesterday at the St. Paul Cathedral in Rome. I have bittersweet feelings about finishing production. Relief for one. It’s stressful shooting on a day to day schedule, never able to prepare more than a couple hours in advance, but I am also sad. We have all come a long way since day one of production and it is so much fun to shoot with the amazing group we have. The first day it took our crew about a half hour to conduct the first interview. On our last day we did two in 25 minutes. We worked well together and everyone did their job quick without sacrificing quality. It’s been difficult for us to be working under a timeframe of another class but I think it has taught us how to work fast and deal with seemingly impossible circumstances. To finish out the trip I thought I would go through what a day in the life of our class was for the past three weeks. As assistant producer, my day is slightly different than others but you still get the idea.
- Research site and read passages in the Bible pertaining to this location.
- Night before (if we’re lucky) but sometimes en route to location I meet with Seth. He goes through the general outline of what Bob Yoder and David Sparks will say in their interviews and the schedule for the day. We briefly brainstorm where we should have each of them stand.
- Inform crew of assigned role and make sure they have all their equipment.
- Once at site brainstorm camera position with the director
- Prep interviewees by talking through their topics and formulating questions to prompt them with (while I do this the crew is quickly setting up the camera, figuring out lighting, and setting up audio)
- Conduct interview. This can take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes.
- Tear down and pack up gear.
This may not seem like an exponential amount of work to do, but what is hard to adequately explain is the time crunch we are on. The Bible class’ tour in Greece was slightly more flexible but we move from one site to the next pretty quickly. We do our interviews when the Bible class gets free time at a location so if they don’t get free time we have to work extremely fast or we are holding up 50 people. Things get even more stressful when we have reservations to make. All of this would be difficult for any documentary crew to handle but the fact that our crew has handled it so well is incredible. I have to admit, I was a little apprehensive going into the trip with three freshman on a crew of only nine people but they never acted like freshman; everyone rose to the challenge. This trip has been an excellent learning experience for me in producing and I loved every minute of it. I feel honored to have led such an awesome crew and to be supported and taught by Seth and Kyle. I’m proud of the footage we got and am excited to continue working on the video over the summer.